Renowned African artists involved in the creation and manipulation of living spaces exceeded expectations and brought the best of their works for the Africa Culture & Design Festival 2017 at the Federal Palace Hotel and Casino from the 9th to 12th of November.

The event organised by the Interior Design Association of Nigeria in partnership with IFI Congress themed This is Africa aimed at showcasing and telling the African story from within and by Africans.

Well-curated works in the exhibition featuring paintings, ceramics, metalwork, ankara settees, ancient sculptures, and architectural models from artists and interior designers like Joseph Eze, Eva Sonaike, Kainebi Osahenye, Sarya Jamal, Hicham Lahlou, Kelani Abass, among others.

The opening night on Thursday appeared at just the right time in the week to offer some dazzling moments and home decor inspo. Fabulous guests and buyers trooped in appreciating the vibrant music and beautiful displays.

The exhibition employed four primary methods of display; the Design Pavilion, The Modern & Contemporary African Arts Pavilion, The Traditional African Art Pavilion, and The Video Installation.

From Ilé-Ilà‘s engaging works with ankara, adire fabric artistry, Banke Kuku‘s Velvet embellished cushions to the Coconut Experience by Joseph Eze and Ian Mwesiga’s puzzling and erratic abstract expressionism, the displays were so beautiful, I wanted to whip out a checkbook from my imaginary red Hérmes bag and take all the pieces home.

Joseph Eze
Barkindo Bocoum
Ilé Ilà
Masquerade Headdress (EKWE)

The Recyclart initiative by Sterling Bank to promote the use of waste to benefit the environment was not to be missed, interesting pieces made from plastic bottles and paper bags is the kind of waste you actually want inside your house.

Egungun – Samson Ogundeji
Paper dress designed by Stephanie Daniels

Beautiful ladies and handsome men dressed in adire attires treated guests like royalties in an ancient Oyo kingdom. Even the outdoor segment screamed tradition; with a palm wine vendor to the side and the Yellow of Lagos‘ ceremonial Keke Napep parked at the entrance.

The Yellow of Lagos Keke Napep

The best part of the Africa Culture & Design Festival 2017 is that it wasn’t a general thematic display with similar or mainstream works. All the pieces were engaging and thought-provoking addressing different social issues through individual styles, flattened out on a passion-filled Afrocentric platform.

The exhibition adequately showed many conversation-sparking artworks about culture and traditions, not just for collectors but also for the up and coming generation.

Now more than ever we have the knowledge and choice to preserve our culture through the things we want to live with, on aesthetic as well as ethical levels.